South Africa

In 1969 I came to the UK as a political refugee from South Africa, my place of birth. I was not allowed to return to South Africa until the release of Nelson Mandela in 1990 Together with comrades from the liberation struggle – fellow academics, the trades unions and civil society organisations – I was involved in a large multi-year programme developing a comprehensive strategy for industrial restructuring in a globalizing and post-Apartheid world. The Industrial Strategy Report – Improving Manufacturing Performance – not only laid out a policy programme for a number of South Africa’s economic sectors, but during the course of the four year research programme it played a leading role in capacity development.

Unfortunately, the Transition from Apartheid has not been an entirely happy story. Severe and chronic incapacity in the state was complemented by extensive looting by an increasingly corrupt ruling party (state capture). Whilst South Africa led the developing world in policy design – not just in Industrial Policy but across the range of policy agendas – the capacity for policy implementation was abysmal. This reinforces the importance of seeing successful Industrial Policy as a process involving the assembly of a range of stakeholders cooperating in activities which meets both public and private interests rather than in the production of glossy chart-filled Visions. From a personal perspective therefore, my research and meaningful activities were soon redirected to actively working with firms, trade unions and civil society organisations in practical programmes designed to achieve a positive insertion into the global economy.

In the list of publications below I highlight what I consider to be my significant contributions to this agenda.


Improving Manufacturing Performance: The Report of the ISP, Cape Town: UCT Press, 1995 (with A Joffe, D Kaplan and D Lewis).

‘The Globalization of Product markets and Immiserizing Growth: Lessons from the South African Furniture Industry’, World Development, Vol. 30, No. 7, pp. 1159-1178, 2002 (with M. Morris and J. Readman).

‘Industrial policy in developing economies: Developing dynamic comparative advantage in the South African automobile sector’, Competition and Change, Vol. 8, No. 2, pp. 153-172, 2004 (with J. Barnes and M. Morris).

‘Trade Policy Reform and the Competitive Response in Kwazulu Natal Province, South Africa’, World Development, Vol. 27, No. 4., pp. 717-737, 1999 (with M. Morris)

‘Globalisation and trade policy reform:  Whither the automobile components sector in South Africa?’, (with J. Barnes), Competition and Change, Vol. 4, No. 2, pp. 211-243, 2000.

‘Globalisation and the death of the local firm?  The automobile components sector in South Africa’, Regional Studies, Vol. 34, No. 9, pp. 797-812., 2000 (with J. Barnes).

‘The use of a lean production index in explaining the transition to global competitiveness: the auto components sector in South `Africa’, Technovation 24,  pp. 199-206, 2004 (with Sakura Kojima).

‘An Industrial Strategy for a Post-Apartheid South Africa’ , IDS Bulletin,  Vol. 25 No. 1, January 1995 (with A Joffe, D Kaplan and D Lewis).

‘Concentration, competition policy and the role of small and medium sized enterprises in South Africa’s industrial development’, Journal of Development Studies, Vol. 35, No. 1, pp. 139-161, 1998, (with Claudia Manning)

‘Trade and Industrial Policy on an Uneven Playing Field: The Case of  the Deciduous Fruit Canning Industry in South Africa’, (World Development, Vol. 27, No.10,  pp. 1787-1802, 1998 (with D. Kaplan).

‘’Economic Restructuring in South Africa:  The Debate Continues’: A Response’, Journal of Southern African Studies, Vol. 20, No. 4, pp. 533-537, December, 1995.

‘Capital Intensity in South African Manufacturing and Unemployment, 1972-1990’, World Development, Vol. 23 No 2, pp. 179-192, 1995.

‘A Policy Agenda for a Post-Apartheid South Africa’, Transformation, Vol 12, 1990.

‘A Growth Path for a Post-Apartheid South Africa’, Transformation, Vol 16, pp. 49-55, 1991,

‘How do South African firms respond to trade policy reform?’ (with M. Morris) in H. Jalilian, M. Tribe and J. Weiss, Industrial development and Policy in Africa, Cheltenham: Edward Elgar, 2000.

‘Meeting the Global Challenge:  A Framework for Industrial Revival in South Africa’, in Baker Pauline, Boraine Alex and Krafchik Warren (eds)  South Africa and the World Economy in the 1990s, Cape Town, David Philips/Washington, The Brookings Institute, 1993 (with A Joffe, D Kaplan and D Lewis).

‘The Manufacturing Sector and Regional Trade in a Democratic South Africa’, in Towards a Post-Apartheid South Africa: Political and Economic Relations in Southern Africa, G Maasdorp and A Whiteside (eds), London, Macmillan, 1992.

‘Infant industries and industrial policy: a lesson from South Africa’, Transformation, No. 34 pp. 57-85, 1997 (with Edmund Mhlongo).